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Movie and record labels are overjoyed at the support they're receiving from the British government

Late in October DailyTech reported on the new three strikes piracy legislation proposed in the United Kingdom by Britain's majority Labour Party.  Under the legislation those caught pirating would receive two warnings, then would be cut off from the internet.  The real headache, though, is how to police the traffic and enforce the provisions on ISPs and consumers.

Despite mass objections from telecoms, citizens, electronics experts, law enforcement officials, and members of the minority conservative and socialist parties, Labour Party officials have blazed ahead with a framework to allow the legislation to be enforced.

According to Labour Party leaders, the government is planning on handing the expense of the Digital Economy Bill down to taxpayers.  That expense is estimated to be approximately £500M (approximately $800M USD).  On average, that works out to more than £25 more a year ($40 USD/year) per internet connection.

And that's considering that the government is counting on the bill reducing piracy enough to increase media revenues by £1.7B ($2.72B USD), leading to £350M ($560M USD) extra in VAT tax revenue.  If that increase isn't realized, British taxpayers could find themselves on the hook for over $1B USD in enforcement expenses.

The initial letter writing campaign is predicted to cut off 40,000 citizens from the internet and cost £1.40 ($2.20 USD) per subscription.  The government appears to have purposefully neglects to include possible economic losses based on citizens being taken offline in its estimates.

Charles Dunstone, chief executive of Carphone Warehouse, whose subsidiary TalkTalk is the biggest consumer provider of broadband in UK, is flabbergasted at how the punitive bill is gaining so much traction.  He states, "Broadband consumers shouldn’t have to bail out the music industry. If they really think it’s worth spending vast sums of money on these measures then they should be footing the bill; not the consumer."

Still the media industry is cheering the British government's decision to obey their commands, despite the taxpayer expenses and objections.  Writes the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills, an industry trade group, "The overall benefits to the country far outweigh the costs."

They argue that movies like X-Men Origins: Wolverine and Star Trek have been pirated millions of times, amounting to millions in lost revenues.

And it certainly helps their argument that in the UK, like in the U.S., the media industry spends enormous sums on legal representation and government lobbying efforts.  As the growing conflict in Britain is proving, if there's one lobbyist power in the UK and U.S. that's perhaps greater than telecommunication firms, it's the media industry trade groups.




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RE: I'm glad
By cochy on 12/29/2009 2:58:32 PM , Rating: 5
Actually America is near the bottom in life expectancy as compared to other modern nations. Though, the article that I read said it's much more the fault of Americans terrible living habits than it is the health care system, because even though America is bottoms in life expectancy, they are just about topping the list of access to medicine and treatment and also topping the list of cancer survival rates (though America has the most cancer of any nation as per % of pop.)


RE: I'm glad
By phattyboombatty on 12/29/2009 3:08:37 PM , Rating: 3
To be fair, I said "increasing" not "high". The life-expectancy of a U.S. citizen is higher today than it was 100 years ago.

But your point is a good one. Modern medicine can only go so far to remediate the horrible habits of Americans.


RE: I'm glad
By Lerianis on 12/29/09, Rating: -1
RE: I'm glad
By bighairycamel on 12/29/2009 4:46:40 PM , Rating: 4
God I freakin hate it when people take a very small sampling of people like family or friends and use that as a basis for an argument. You CANNOT discern the state of the American people as a whole based on a few family members.

Check your facts; there are thousands of studies showing increased obesity leading to increase heart failure.

And you're just plain wrong about life expectency. Japan is #1 followed by Hong Kong, Iceland, Switzerland, and Australia. Hardly 3rd world. And here's the kicker.... they have relatively low obescity rates compared to the US! NO WAY!


RE: I'm glad
By omnicronx on 12/29/2009 5:51:26 PM , Rating: 3
Taking this further, around 3% of the Japanese population is considered overweight, whereas the conservative US number is closer to 30% and out of the top 5, the highest was 12%, with the average being closer to 7-8%)


RE: I'm glad
By PrimarchLion on 12/29/2009 5:18:35 PM , Rating: 4
How did your family survive the pollution and poison?


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